A new community centre for Shinfield took a major step forward this week as contracts were signed with Life Build who will lead on construction of this exciting new partnership project.
Shinfield Parish Council and Wokingham Borough Council have been working together on this eagerly anticipated project to bring a new, innovative community centre to the heart of the village.
The community centre is part of the Shinfield Parish major development which includes new homes and a district centre in Shinfield Village with a supermarket and other shops, as well as a neighbourhood centre in Spencerswood. There are also two new primary schools, new playing fields and open spaces.
The newly built Shinfield Eastern Relief Road is also part of this development which includes a bridge over the M4 and the Thames Valley Science and Innovation Park, an innovative employment hub with close links to the University of Reading.
The community centre is part funded by developers’ contributions with land provided by the University of Reading. It is a fundamental piece of the councils growth strategy to build the majority of new housing the borough needs in four key locations in the borough where each will be supported by the new the infrastructure and facilities it needs.
The impressive design for the new centre will create a focal point for community activity next to the much loved School Green and will incorporate the redevelopment of the existing parish hall alongside the creation of a new building on the site of the old Royal British Legion.
Works are due to start in August with the demolition of the old British Legion to make way for the state of the art multifunctional centre that will open in late 2021.
A competition was held last year by the parish council where competitors were invited to submit their own designs for the new building to ensure local residents had a community centre that was both innovative and bespoke to their particular needs.
The pioneering design from AOC Architects was selected, and they have been working closely with the parish and borough councils on the final design.
The new community centre will provide a large space for activities and events, a new café, meeting rooms, library facilities, a bespoke children’s space, and an enclosed garden area.
Cllr Parry Batth, exec member for environment and leisure said, “It is wonderful to be working so closely with Shinfield Parish Council to bring the local community together. The centre has been designed to be able to host a wide variety of activities and events so there will be something for everyone, the hub of the community.”
"We are thrilled that we have taken the next step forward with this exciting project for our community and cannot wait for construction to start in August and the centre to open to the community next year.” said Andrew Grimes, Chair of Shinfield Parish Council.
Cllr Wayne Smith, exec member for planning and enforcement added, “It’s so exciting to see so much infrastructure being built across the borough: just to name some of the recent projects, we have Bohunt Secondary School which is the first new secondary school in the borough for 50 years, the Shinfield and Arborfield relief roads, Floreat Montague Primary School in Wokingham, Aldergrove C of E Primary School in Shinfield, Ryeish Green Sports Hub and now this new community centre in Shinfield.”
Details of the designs for the new centre can be found on the council’s website by searching for planning application 191387.